Monday Motivator: Deliberate Incompleteness

Monday Motivator Motivation Quote

“Often times my work can look unfinished in a traditional sense, but at the same time feel finished the way it is. This is the area of work I love to explore, this balanced ‘incompleteness.’

“…a work is finished when what I try to capture with the mood, composition, and visual rhythm is there; even if that means the whole surface isn’t covered in paint or fully rendered. Adding more to a work doesn’t always make it better for me…”
— Daniel Segrove
Daniel Segrove: Mundanity, interview by Debbie Chessell

Segrove is a contemporary figure painter who leaves areas of a composition “unfinished”. Does it create mystery and intrigue, or does it leave too much unsaid?

If “incomplete” unsettles you, try substituting the word “ambiguous”.

Does “finished” means “tells you the whole story”? Isn’t it more interesting to figure out part of the story yourself rather than be told?

Ultimately, I think, one person’s “finished” is another’s “still more to be done” and yet another’s “overworked”. Your painting, you decide.

Add a comment here: